Archive for the ‘offline’ Category

Avid MC6 Workflows (Offline, Adobe CS5.5) Tutorials

Sunday, July 1st, 2012

Avid Tutorials

Mobile Video Editing Hardware: Thoughts, Ideas & Dreams (continued)

Friday, January 13th, 2012

Following-on from my earlier post, Mobile Video Editing Hardware: Thoughts, Ideas & Dreams, where I considered an eventual migration from my laptop to a luggable PC, my thoughts veered (possibly having spotted cash-icebergs among them) towards an alternative solution:

  • Use the laptop for lightweight editing & compositing.
  • Use the desktop as a number-crunching RADI-attached server.

The two could be linked by:

  • Remote access / remote sessions (some of which via smartphone)
  • DropBox, e.g. have an active folder where I can drop Adobe Premiere XML and have it processed remotely by Adobe apps installed there.

Some links:

    • (There’s no equivalent “_part_1” page.  I guess it’s just “Part 2” of that guy’s story).
    • DIY virtual machines: Rigging up at home, by Trevor Pott, 11th January 2012 14:33 GMT
    • Personal Virtual Machine (PVM) (in use) for about seven years with retail boxed version of Windows XP.
    • VM has been moved from virtualization platform to virtualization platform over the years … the most recent incarnation … inside Hyper-V.
    • …nothing beats Windows Server 2008 R2. It comes with a top-notch virtualisation platform (Hyper-V), and added RemoteFX support with Service Pack 1. You can still use the desktop operating system for all your HTPC needs, and a single Server 2008 R2 Standard license allows you to run both a host copy and a single virtual instance of Server 2008 R2.
    • In my case, the host instance does little more than play movies on the projector via VLC. The virtual instance of Server runs my Plex media server, and aggregates my many storage devices into a single share using DFS.
  • Shuttle Inc (Taiwan)

Mobile Video Editing Hardware: Thoughts, Ideas & Dreams

Tuesday, January 10th, 2012

Want a mobile “suitcase” editing system, something more (and more expandable) than a laptop but not too expensive.  Primarily to be used for Adobe CS5.5 for media enhancement / editing / compositing etc.

Nearest I found was NextDimension’s range around $7000 I think (but just guesswork – could be way off – would need to get a quote).   That would (if true) be around £4500 at current rates.  Plus import…  NextDimension call such machines “flextops” (Maybe they coined the term? Google searches on it mostly come up with them.)

Apart from the (mil/broadcast-lite but me-heavy) price, it might possibly be undesirably heavy to lug around much.   If so (just guessing, not assuming), it would make more sense to go for a modular quick-setup system.  So, starting to “think different” in this direction:

  • Standard tower, capable of taking new CUDA etc. graphics cards etc. as they emerge, but no need for more than say a couple of disks, maybe if SSD could even get away with just a single disk? (For system and media – inadvisable for traditional disks of course, what about for SSD’s?  I have much to learn about SSD’s though).
  • “Laptop-Lite” to talk to it.  With robust shuttered-stereoscopic HD monitor.
  • Gigabit network to NAS fast storage (SSD and/or RAID ?).

Maybe in that case it would be far more logical/affordable to use an existing laptop as a client working together with a luggable tower server, sufficiently light and robust for frequent dis/re -connection and travel.  And remote access of course (no heavy data to be exchanged, assume that’s already sync’d).  And some means to easily swap/sync applications and projects (data) between laptop and tower, giving the option to use just the (old) laptop on its own if needed.  All such options are handy for the travelling dude (working on train, social visits etc.) who also occasionally has to do heavy processing.  Then would just need a protective suitcase for the tower, plus another one for a decent monitor for grading etc.

I certainly won’t be spending anything just yet, but it’s good to have at least some kind of “radar”.


Avid MC Workflow: Offline/Online Editing: Video Tutorial

Thursday, September 8th, 2011

As illustrated in my previous post on this subject (, the popular (it seems) approach to offline/online media file replacement is to “hack” the file system.  In the example in that previous post, the hack was to move files to a different folder.  An alternative is to rename the existing folder then rename the required folder the original of the existing folder.  That approach is illustrated in a video tutorial at

Avid MC Workflow – Offline/Online Editing Example

Thursday, September 8th, 2011

I found a great simple example of a typical Avid workflow, happens to be for footage from an ARRI ALEXA camera, which can record to ProRes (amongst other things).  Once again, the workflow depends on the clunky/hacky method of taking files offline, in order to substitute others (e.g. proxies), in this case by moving them out of the MXF folder.  The full article is at  The last time I posted on this sort of issue was


Avid Workflows with AMA & Offline/Online Combined

Saturday, August 20th, 2011
    • AMA and Media Management – Media Composer Cutting Edge
      • Suppose you start with a Project having a Sequence of clips from a Bin, these clips directly linked (via AMA) to original media-recordings in a camera’s native format.
      • “There are still going to be times when you want to integrate that media in your local or shared AVid storage”.
      • This can be done easily via the Consolidate and Transcode features:
        • Sequence: RightClick > Consolidate/Transcode
        • Consolidate/Transcode:
          • I THINK BUT UNSURE:
            • Select Consolidate if you just want the camera’s native format re-wrapped in MXF
            • Select Transcode if you want it transcoded e.g. into DNxHD
            • In both cases, you end up with a new sequence, of clips which are now:
              • On the Avid Media storage (MXF).  Better performance (?), better media management (by Avid) and ability to do some things that AMA can’t, such as multi-camera.
              • Only the subsets (of original footage) needed by the sequence (plus handles).  Saves disk space.
          • Settings:
            • “Video and audio on same drive”: YES
            • Select required target drive
            • Define Handle Length (e.g. two seconds’ worth of frames).
              • (Implies that Consolidate will only ingest the subsets of clips actually referenced in the Sequence)
            • “Create new sequence”: YES
            • “Delete original media files when done”: NO
            • “Skip media files already open on the target drive”: YES
              • (Thinks: what if they already exist on some other drive (that’s connected) ?)
            • “Relink selected clips to target drive before skipping”: YES
          • Click “go-button” (labelled Consolidate or Transcode).
      • If at any subsequent stage you want to re-edit:
        • Re-mount the original camera volumes (e.g. disk drive/drives).
        • Re-link your sequence to them (via AMA ?).
        • {Subsequently, presumably re- Consolidate or Transcode }
          • {Presumably if all you did was add something, the only action performed will be the Consolidate/Transcode of that very addition}
          • {What if existing clips are trimmed (up or down) in the sequence?  Will the corresponding existing Consolidate/Transcode product be appended/reduced/replaced as necessary (is AVid “clever” about all this?  Or will a new one co-exist alongside the old one (which then just wastes space) ? }
          • {Does an Avid-managed file act like an object, i.e. exists so long as something (bin or sequence) points at it, otherwise is deleted by some “garbage collection” ?}
      • ReLink is also handy for Offline-Online conversion.  Example:
        • A remote cameraman delivers (e.g. via DigiDelivery) a set of XDCAM-HD Proxies.
        • Editor receives proxies and Imports them into Avid.
          • No AMA used here.
        • Some time later the Online files arrive (e.g. by physical delivery of disks).
        • Avid’s ReLink function matches the offline proxy sequence, frame-for-frame, with the newly-avaiable HD footage.